One of the hardest parts of getting into the back to school swing is getting used to the routine, especially the early mornings. Here are 5 ways to getting out the door on time.
1. Prep the Night Before – There is just something about mornings that spells frantic rush! Avoid the morning battle by preparing as much as you can the night before. Assemble lunches, lay out clothes, pack backpacks, and even prep breakfast. Why spend a few minutes making coffee in the morning when you can program the coffee maker the night before? The less on your to do list in the a.m., the better!
2. Make a Family Calendar – Use a shared calendar application, or post a family calendar in a place where everyone can view it. For even better organization, assign each family member a color. Having everyone’s activities and commitments in one place makes planning infinitely easier.
3. Assign “Catch All” Baskets – Assign each family member a “catch all” basket in the entryway or mud room. Whenever you collect something you’ll need to remember in the morning (a signed permission slip, sports equipment for tomorrow’s game, itinerary for tomorrow’s business trip) drop it in the basket. It will make getting out the door in the morning much easier. No more running around the house to find what you need! Best of all, you’ll avoid the dreaded “I forgot (fill in the blank) at home” feeling.
4. Delegate, Delegate, Delegate! – You know the saying “give a man a fish and he’ll eat for the day, teach a man to fish and he’ll eat for a lifetime”? Well, this applies to many aspects of life. It may take a few extra minutes in the beginning, but teaching your children to pitch in where they can, can save everyone time in the long run. Depending on the age of the child, choose one or two tasks that he can handle on his or her own. It may be as simple as letting your child choose what to wear. Perhaps your seven year old can prep the breakfast table, or your ten year old can take the dog out.
5. Wake Up Earlier (Sorry!) – We’d be remiss if we didn’t add this. The most obvious way to get out the door on time is to wake up earlier. If 20 minutes sounds like too much beloved sleep to give up, try setting the alarm earlier by smaller increments, say 5 minutes earlier each day. You’re less likely to feel the sting of the early wake up call if you make it a gradual process.